Charles makes dramatic return to quiz hopefuls
AMACCLESFIELD industrialist, who was born 300 years ago, is rising from the dead to cross-examine political candidates in the run-up to the general election.
The historical figure Charles Roe - played by the local thespian David Wilkinson - will moderate the hustings as part of Treacle Market on Sunday, April 26, from 12.30pm to 2pm.
Parliamentary candidates will face his questions and mingle with the audience for a chat before and after the debate in St Michael’s churchyard.
Charles Roe is known for bringing the silk industry to Macclesfield and was its mayor for two years. As his 300th birthday falls on the May 7 - the same day that will see Britons across the country heading to the polls in the general and local elections - organisers decided he would bring an unusual twist to the usual hustings.
Jude D’Souza, who has co-organised the event with the team behind the Treacle Market, said: “Given the coincidence of Roe’s tricentennial falling on election day, it seemed too good an opportunity to resist.”
They want to get people excited about politics and teach them about local history. They believe that many of today’s pressing issues, such as the local economy and access to healthcare, are very much the same as in the 18th century.
Jude, who runs Entropy Events, said: “Not only do we make politics a bit more interesting, but people get a chance to learn a little local history through the man that industrialised Macclesfield.”
Readers are encouraged to send in any questions to jude@entropyevents. com until 6pm on Saturday, a selection of which will be posed to each of the candidates.
Visitors can also write questions on cards and hand them to a volunteer on the day.
Among the confirmed candidates are Macclesfield’s current MP David Rutley for the Conservatives, Tim Roca for Labour, Neil Christian for the Liberal Democrats, Joan Plimmer for the Green Party and Adrian Howard for UKIP.
Jane Munro, co-founder of Treacle Market, says she hopes the hustings will attract members of the public who have become more and more disengaged with politics.
She said: “We hope that reanimating the past may help animate the political present.
“By giving this event a unique spin, we want to offer succour to the politically weary and reinject some life into the debate.”
●● Thespian David Wilkinson plays Charles Roe for the Macclesfield Treacle Market Hustings